May 29 - Update



Dear Friends and Neighbours,


With the City’s release of geographic information on COVID-19 cases, we now have a visual demonstration of the disparaging impact of this pandemic amongst Toronto’s communities.While COVID-19 is present in every neighbourhood in Toronto, it is evident that areas with higher portions of multi-unit residences and lower median household incomes have higher concentrations of reported cases than other neighbourhoods. This is unfortunately a reality for neighbourhoods in York South—Weston.


Today, the Government of Ontario announced that the province is expanding testing for the general public, frontline workers, and workplaces including mitigation efforts such as setting up local mobile testing teams in ‘hot spot’ neighbourhoods.I have written to Premier Ford today requesting assistance from the Province of Ontario for York South—Weston in the form of local testing capacity, reusable masks for the community and personal protective equipment for service providers. Click here to read the letter.


By knowing where those impacted by COVID-19 live, we should be able to inform where proactive testing can be helpful. I am working with my colleagues at the City to identify how the geographic data translates into action from Toronto Public Health to address the local reality and reduce the spread of the virus. My full statement is available here


I would like to remind everyone that the most effective way to protect yourself from contracting COVID-19 is to maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres (six feet) from others, to wash your hands regularly with soap and water or the use of hand sanitizer, and to avoid touching your face. Wearing a face mask can also help to reduce your ability to spread the virus to others. ​


A reminder that for property tax customers on the six-instalment plan, your next payment is due Monday, June 1.You can use the Property Tax Lookup tool at http://toronto.ca/propertytax to see your new due dates. 


Staff from Lambton Park Community School cancelled their neighbourhood car parade yesterday due to the weather.The parade has been rescheduled for Monday, June 1 at 5-6 PM!


Wishing you a wonderful weekend.


Sincerely,


Frances



CITY-WIDE UPDATES:


Reminder: Gardiner Expressway closure and accelerated road construction


This weekend, the Gardiner Expressway will be fully closed from the Don Valley Parkway to Hwy 427 for annual maintenance and improvement activities, the intersection of Richmond Street East and Church Street is fully closed for construction, and there will be closures in place for people to practise physical distancing while being physically active on Bayview Avenue and Lake Shore Boulevard East.


The Gardiner Expressway will be fully closed starting at 11 p.m. on Friday, May 29 until 5 a.m. on Monday, June 1 for important annual maintenance and improvements. Please plan essential travel ahead, leave plenty of extra time and be patient. More information is available at https://www.toronto.ca/gardiner.



ActiveTO and Quiet Streets


To help stop the spread of COVID-19 while allowing for residents to be outside and get exercise, vehicle access on parts of some major roads will be closed for walking, running and biking again this Saturday and Sunday.


The following major road closures are planned this weekend from Saturday, May 30 at 6 a.m. until Sunday, May 31 at 11 p.m.:

  • Lake Shore Boulevard East (eastbound lanes only) from Coxwell Avenue to just south of Woodbine Avenue (Kew Beach Avenue)

  • Bayview Avenue from Mill Street to Rosedale Valley Road, and River Street from Gerrard Street East to Bayview Avenue


A new online map is available to residents that shows locations that have been installed as part of CurbTO for businesses (pickup zones and pedestrian zones) and ActiveTO locations for residents (Quiet Streets and Major Weekend Road Closures only).



Toronto City Council approves property tax relief to help sustain live music venues


Yesterday, Toronto City Council approved recommendations to help address the unprecedented challenges threatening live music venues in Toronto. Council expanded the Creative Co-Location Facilities Property Tax Subclasses to provide property tax relief for live music venues. The new category will apply to live music venues that meet specific eligibility criteria.


The deadline for eligible live music venues to apply is June 19. Applications are available on the City’s website.



City parks, beach and amenities this weekend


The City of Toronto continues to safely and gradually open services and amenities for residents to enjoy this weekend, following guidance from Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health. City park amenities open this weekend include:

  • picnic shelters

  • soccer and multi-use outdoor fields, including running tracks

  • baseball diamonds and basketball courts

  • some public tennis courts and pickleball courts

  • off-leash dog parks

  • BMX locations and skateboard parks

  • City-run golf courses and disc golf locations

  • ravine green spaces, beaches, trails and boardwalks for walking, running or biking

  • fishing with a licence, boating, kayaking and canoeing


If you arrive at a park that is crowded, you are advised to visit a different park or return at a later time when there are fewer people.


Toronto beaches remain open. Beaches are not closed under Province of Ontario’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, City staff are working with public health officials on how the supervised swim program (i.e. lifeguards) could operate at Toronto beaches and the City will share more information when it becomes available. Swimming without the supervision of a lifeguard at the City’s beaches is not recommended.


Washrooms at Trinity Bellwoods Park will open this weekend, followed by a phased approach with the aim of opening all park washrooms over the next several weeks. Staff are working with Toronto Public Health on guidelines for the safe opening of washrooms and other amenities.


Most parking lots in City parks are open this weekend. Three lots will remain closed: Sir Sir Casimir Gzowski, Sunnyside and Woodbine. High Park is closed to cars on weekends.



Physical distancing circles at Trinity Bellwoods Park


Yesterday, the City of Toronto began adding painted physical distancing circles on the grass in Trinity Bellwoods Park as a pilot project to encourage people to practise physical distancing. When visiting the park, people can expect to see grids of painted circles roughly 8 feet in diameter and 10 feet apart. Each circle is large enough for two adults laying down or three adults sitting cross-legged.


If the park is crowded when people arrive and if no circles are available, people should visit a different park or come back later. Parks near Trinity Bellwoods Park include Stanley Park and Alexandra Park. Bickford Park, Art Eggleton Park, Christie Pits Park and Dufferin Grove Park are also close.



City of Toronto update on COVID-19


The City of Toronto continues to respond to COVID-19. As of May 27 at 3 pm. there are 10,901 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 175 cases since the previous day. There are 372 cases in hospital, with 83 in ICU. In total, 8,086 people have recovered from COVID-19. To date, there have been 810 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto.


This week, the City released geographic information on COVID-19 cases in Toronto to help fight the spread of this virus in the city. Case status data and geographic maps can be found on the City’s reporting platform.



Enforcement update


The City’s coordinated COVID-19 Enforcement Team remains focused on providing education about the physical distancing bylaw and provincial orders. Ensuring compliance through education and awareness remains the preferred method of engagement, but enforcement continues to take place if necessary.


Yesterday, the City received 62 complaints involving people using outdoor amenities that remain closed or not practising physical distancing in parks or squares. Bylaw officers issued one ticket. Enforcement officers have spoken to more than 6,200 people in City parks about the closures and public health measures. The City also received 34 complaints about gatherings – no tickets were issues.



For the latest updates from the City of Toronto, please click here.

For the latest updates from the Federal Government, please click here

For the latest updates from the Province of Ontario, please click here

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©2019 by Councillor Frances Nunziata.